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Greening the Lighting Industry for High Performance with LED Systems (IEPC)

Trends in high efficiency lighting for industrial and business applications from IEPC

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An Industry Overview by

Ron Flores, International Engineering Products Corporation (IEPC)

Reducing energy costs of lighting has been the main driver of change within the lighting industry; therefore, the industry periodically undergoes a cyclical transformation period. The current wave started in earnest in the 1990s. This industry transformation involves upgrading older, inefficient lighting lamp technology such as T12, HID lamps and fixtures, and electronic ballasts with newer, more sophisticated solid state T5 and T8 lamps and fixtures. The second wave (in process since about 2006) is replacing incandescent lamps with CFL lamps. Eventually, in the third wave, LED technology will replace most lamps. This will happen much faster than suggested by most lighting experts.

The Lighting Industry Timeline of Current and Future Technologies

Timeline of lighting

The industry’s “Big Three”—GE, Philips, and Sylvania—each play significant roles in this transformation and are positioning themselves to reinforce their dominance with the newer, solid state LED technology. However, this technology depends on outdated external components such as dimmers, timers, relays, control panels, and related intensive labor. In focusing primarily on lamp and ballast technology to reduce lighting energy costs, these companies prolong the transformation period and provide only limited energy efficiency.

The key to effective reduction of energy costs is controlling lighting energy with a solid state, fully-integrated lighting control product.

Why then, if systems that rely on old support technologies, do not answer the problem caused by lighting energy costs, do the Big Three persist in employing the same insufficient methods? In short, they are profit motivated, and would like to maximize return on their established product lines as they first push CFL and slowly move into LED. This slow transformation process is knowingly or unknowingly assisted by utility companies that must meet mixed profit and regulatory goals to reduce lighting energy costs.

Although T5, T8, and CFL lighting systems are currently at the forefront of the transformation, this is only temporary. Real efficiency and staying power comes from LED. If you “follow the money”, you will see the acquisitions, deal-making, and takeovers that the Big Three and others have been involved in for the past several years.

One reason for the high visibility of the CFL shift is that Philips controls the compact fluorescent market. CFL has many disadvantages: it contains mercury, has troublesome dimming issues, isn’t as bright as an incandescent light, requires a 15-minute warm-up period, is costly, and CFL lamps cannot be easily disposed of. After a strong lobbying effort led by Philips, the Green movement, and former Vice President Al Gore, Congress enacted stiff national regulations that will mandate CFL and make incandescent lamps obsolete by 2012.

What’s missing in the lighting industry is the vision to understand that it is the ability to control lighting ENERGY, rather than lamp technology, that is critical to effectively reducing lighting energy costs. Market leadership or education of the user is needed to make this leap in design for this level of high-performance energy reduction.

In summary, the lighting industry is ineffectively attempting to reduce lighting energy costs with its traditional cycle of lamp technology change. But the real change needed to meet the growing energy and climate change crisis and demand forecast is the ability to control lighting energy costs with solid state electronics and integrated systems. Such a change is disruptive and will radically transform the industry -- and it is almost certain that it will have to come from outside the lighting industry.

The design engineers IEPC have worked for years to develop their products to provide what their tests indicate is a transformative leap forward in solid state electronics and integrated systems.

IEPC’s universal lighting control products are fully integrated lighting control products that maximize efficacy, lumen maintenance, and lighting energy cost, providing a complete solution to the lighting energy challenge.

The Traditional Lighting System

Existing technology requires the hand wiring of external sensors or components to either magnetic or electronic ballasts within a fixture. Each fixture or group of fixtures must be hand wired to a control panel. (See figure 1)

IEPC LED lighting system

Figure 1

Next, a communications protocol such as DALI, Bacnet, or Echelon is required along with some additional hardware and software programming and interfacing, to obtain management level lighting control. (See figure 2) This is very similar to a very sophisticated local network inside a facility that is used to control all the sensors – dimmers, timers, relays, and photo cells. This is also labor intensive and costly.

IEPC LED lighting system

Figure 2

The IEPC Solid State Solution

The IEPC solution not only replaces older technology with newer technology but eliminates external sensors and components with integrated automation and total lighting energy controls. IEPC control technology allows the user to program light usage continuously. Furthermore, the user is alerted to degrading light efficiency and the need to replace failing lamps before the die. IEPC technology including controls results in lighting energy cost saving of up to 70%. Thus, in contrast to the existing Perceived Solution, IEPC products and technology require only a two wire connection per fixture connected in a daisy chain fashion or wireless connection to provide a complete lighting control system. The entire system is connected to the Internet via an existing local network. (See figure 3)

IEPC LED lighting system

Figure 3

No matter which industry you are in, IEPC lighting control products deliver maximum efficiency for your lighting and guarantees to lower your energy costs from 40 to 70%. IEPC lighting control products pay for themselves from the savings you generate in reduced energy bills on your monthly energy bill (plus rebates).

With this system, you can manage T5, T8, CFL, HID, and LED fixtures and run lamps from 13W to 430W, with true universal input voltage from 90V to 300V. It runs most major lamp brands including GE, Philips, Sylvania, Westinghouse, Iwasaki, Ushio, Nanjing, etc. and works with Metal Halide, Pulse Start, High Pressure Sodium, and most fluorescent lamps.

Additional features and benefits include:

  • ∑ Monitor and manage every lamp from the fixture, a laptop, or a computer and generate analytical reports
  • ∑ Coordinate your overhead lighting to emphasize or de-emphasize certain areas of a business or stadium
  • ∑ Utilize motion sensors, photo cells, and built in dimmer to maximize the energy-efficiency of each lamp
  • ∑ Create ultimate lighting scenes or duplicate ideal lighting conditions with superior control options that allow simulation of actual sunlight patterns
  • ∑ Instant demand response and load management allows quick and easy alteration of lighting, especially when complying with local and state energy requirements
  • ∑ With built-in Energy Management & Validation (EM & V) monitor real time lighting cost and savings.

Business and Industry Applications of Solid State Lighting Systems

IEPC Lighting Control products are the first that meet state energy reduction mandates while providing significant cost-reduction and enhanced lighting quality for industrial and commercial businesses, warehouses, aquariums, hydroponics growers, sporting facilities and retail stores.

Ron Flores
International Engineering Products Corporation --IEPC Corp.
15179 Springdale St.
Huntington Beach, CA 92649

Edited by Carolyn Allen
| lighting | energy efficiency | operations |


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